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Posted by LEP 1950 on 9th May 2017  

My message still hasn't appeared after almost 4 hours. Just quickly, between 1754 and 1837 compulsory to marry in an Anglican church. No marriages in Ashton between 1754 and 1845 - only at mother church St Oswald's in Winwick.
Most likely marriage of Peter Boardman to Margaret Marsh of Deane on 30 Sept 1760. She was possibly baptised in Deane on 8 Oct 1738, daughter of John Marsh, abode Rumford. The date would fit with her age on Elizabeth's document of 1767 (i.e. 30), but she doesn't seem to be a Papist at this point. Although I've read that sometimes Catholics had their children christened in Anglican churches "pro forma", so I don't know. But can Peter really have a Thomas with Ellen and another with Margaret? (Little Thomas's age would fit in with a marriage in 1760). It seems strange. Or is one a relative who has been taken in and "adopted"??


Posted by LEP1950 on 9th May 2017  


I really have a lot going on at the moment and so I haven't really been following what you have been discussing with Elizabeth. I just noticed your remark about Catholic marriages. It was actually a legal requirement in England for all marriages (except Puritans and Jews and the Royal family, I think) to take place in an Anglican church between 1754 and 1837. So if a Peter Boardman married a Margaret after his first wife's death in 1754, then there should be a marriage somewhere. Also I remembered from my own ancestry research that no marriages took place at St Thomas, Ashton between 1754 and 1845, but at St Oswald's in Winwick. Since men tended to remarry quickly in those days look at the marriage to a Margaret Marsh on 30 Sep 1760. There was a later one in 1777 to a Margaret Lowe. Unfortunately status such as "widower" is not given in records at this time at this church.

I'll get back to you when I've done helping Margie.


Posted by JBrown86 on 9th May 2017  

Hi Elizabeth,

I found what I assume must be Peter Boardman's first wife:

Burial: 7 Feb 1754 St Thomas, Ashton in Makerfield, Lancashire, England
Ellen Boardman - Wife of Peter Boardman
Performed at: Ashton Chapel
Register: Burials 1746 - 1809, Page 5, Entry 14
Source: LDS Film 1885662

being Catholic I can't find his remarriage to a Margaret. I agree with the 1779 burial of him as well - interesting that burials of non-CoE are on the registers such as Lancs OPC but not the baptisms or marriages (for the most part). I can't find any definitive burial for Margaret - being so much younger than him, perhaps she even remarried, but being Catholic this wouldn't be on Lancs OPC anyway.

I used a couple other sites to scan limited Catholic records for the Boardmans and Unsworths in question, with no luck :(

On Richard Unsworth, he seems to have had a son who was buried about 5 months after Richard himself:

Burial: 1 Nov 1771 All Saints, Wigan, Lancashire, England
Joseph Unsworth - Son of Richd. Unsworth
Abode: Haigh
Source: LDS Film 1885699

This is the only child I can find for this couple (Richard & Betty) at this stage. Perhaps he was their only infant death hence the burial record. It doesn't indicate how old Joseph was though. Richard is not indicated as deceased in the record.

Hope your day goes well


Posted by LEP1950 on 8th May 2017  


I'm now having second thoughts about Helen Worsake/Worsick. I discovered a burial at All Saints of a Sarah Worswick, daughter of Dr Worswick of Standishgate on 25 Feb 1741/42. She is noted as being "Rom.", i.e. a Roman Catholic. A year later a Mary Worswick, the wife of Richard of Standishgate was also buried at All Saints. Perhaps Helen was a daughter of this family. On the other hand, I suppose she could have been a niece, cousin or whatever and through these relatives found herself in Wigan. A lot of guesswork involved at this stage!


Posted by lEP1950 on 8th May 2017  

There was another William, chr. on 27 December 1741. The first William must have died. Missed that at first glance.


Posted by LEP1950 on 8th May 2017  

For Margie:

I'm a bit pressed for time at the moment, but I have so far managed to find a baptism of a HELENA WORSICK at St Joseph's RC church, Brindle (Chorley, so quite close) on 9 June, 1730. It is quite possible/likely that this is "your" Helen. Her parents were William (Gulielmus)and Isabella. Siblings:

ANNA (23 Sept 1726)
ELIZABETH (7 June 1728)
(HELENA, herself)
MARIA (3 Mar 1732)
MARIA (16 Feb 1734)
THOMAS (14 Fb 1736)
JOANNES (JOHN, 15 Jun 1738)

I found these on familysearch.org, but they will also be on ancestry as they are from the record "England select births and christenings 1538 - 1975)

Interestingly, there is a baptism somewhat later at this church of a
MARGARET BONNEY, bapt. 20 Feb 1788 to John Bonney and Margaret. Don't know whether this is a descendant.


Posted by JBrown86 on 8th May 2017  

Oops... I see now where that 1809 date came from. Mind blank... my apologies.

Posted by JBrown86 on 8th May 2017  

Also Linda,
an Ancestry family tree shows Ann Dixon born 18 Jan 1809 Billinge, daur of a William Dixon. There is no evidence given to back that information up, and Ann's age at death in 1867 makes it hard to believe. Wonder where it came from - I've found nothing yet. Hope your weekend is going well.


Posted by JBrown86 on 8th May 2017  

Hi Linda,

I've searched the "The Official Non-Conformist and Non-Parochial BMDs Service" at BMDRegisters.co.uk - unfortunately none of Thomas and Ann's children appear there either. I'll keep scouring the web.

Posted by JBrown86 on 8th May 2017  

Hi Linda,
I see 1803 as being way out with regards to the age Thomas is listed at on Censuses; however, his death in mid-1885 recorded at age 80 would make it only two or even just one year out - if the 1803 one is still worth considering.

I haven't found any of the children's baptisms yet - the children as per BMDs are as follows:

Mary (1827-1858)
Wm (1829-1859)
Margaret (b 1832)
Sarah (1834-1901)
Jane (1837-1903) (my ancestor)
Elizabeth (1839-1840)
Elizabeth (b 1841)
John (1844-1906)
Ann (b 1846)

Billinge seems to be the most common birthplace amongst the children. Upholland and Wigan also mentioned for some, though these could easily also be Billinge. Interesting to think perhaps the Fairhursts were Catholics.

I ran a LancsOPC search for surname Fairhurst bringing all results. Searching for the letters "RC," to find events in RC chapels brings 147 results; all of these are in St John RC in Wigan, save for one burial in Bedford Leigh and a 1904 marriage in Blackburn. They range from 1742 to 1904; nothing that would be Thomas & Ann's children however. Unfortunately.


Posted by Elizabeth Prior on 7th May 2017  

There are no Allens in the areas you mention.
The Bonney entries are in Walton le Dale,Westby, Medlar with Wesham,Warton (Kirkham parish)& Clifton with Salwick.
The only Bonny in the right area is Ellen, a spinner, age 40 who has lived in Ashton for 16 years.
The Dickinson (and variants) in the right areas are
Ann Dickenson age 81 a linen weaver living in Orrell.
Samuel Dickinson age 20 a farm servant living in Ashton for two years.
Ann Dickson age 18 a servant living in Arbury (Culcheth quarter)resident 6 months.
The other Dickinson entries range from Formby to Ribchester to Warton (Kirkham parish)
There are no Worsicks, a spelling that seems more common further north in Lancashire, but there are
Mary Worsup age 32 living in Hindley ousekeeper to Mr John Eastman the priest; she is 8 years a resident.
In Ashton there are the following Worsleys:-
Isabell age 64 a widow and farmer resident 16 years
Dolley (sic) her daughter age 30 also resident 16 years. I wonder if she is the same person as the Dorothy Worsick who stood godmother to Thomas son of Thomas & Ann Berry 26 September 1765 at St John's Wigan.
Thomas age 36 a weaver resident 36 years
Elizabeth age 32 his wife resident 32 years
Their children Richard (14),Mary (11, William (9) and Elizabeth (4)
William age 28 a carpenter resident 16 years and his son John age 6.
I hope this is of some help.

Posted by Margie on 7th May 2017  

Around the Winwick area including Lowton Golbourne Bryn & Ashton.
Yes various spellings also for Dickonson which does not help.

The other names also within the same area plus Wigan.

Thanks Margie

Posted by Elizabeth Prior on 6th May 2017  

Hi Margie,
Is there any particular area? I've had a quick look at the separate index and there is no Dickonson but there are Dicconsons, Diceonsons,Dickensons and Dickinson. The spellings do vary.

Posted by Margie on 6th May 2017  

For Elizabeth Prior,
Would you mind looking for the following names in the 1767 Return of Papists.

Bonney (various spellings)
Worswick : :

Thank you so much Margie.

Posted by Elizabeth Prior on 5th May 2017  

Hi Jon,
The document to which you refer is a marriage bond and is on-line at Findmypast.
John Unsworth is the groom and John Boardman the bondsman.
In August 1767 (Return of Papists)John Unsworth (18)is listed in Haigh with his father Richard(58),mother Betty(58) and sister Betty(21). Richard is described as a farmer and the family has lived in Haigh for 22 years. It is highly likely that the Richard who died in 1771 and was buried at Wigan is the same person. He left a will and I would say that it is well worth applying for a copy from Lancashire Archives.
John Boardman, the bondsman, is almost certainly the same person as the John Boardman(38) in the 1767 Return who was living in Southworth & Croft with his wife and children. His occupation is farmer.
Margaret Boardman(18) is in Ashton quarter listed with her father Peter(50),stepmother Margaret(30) and siblings John(20),Thomas(12)and confusingly another Thomas(6). Her father is described as a farmer. The family has always lived in Ashton.
I suspect that John the bondsman is a younger brother of Peter.
I hope this is of some help/use.

Posted by LEP1950 on 5th May 2017  

Have you found any baptisms for Thomas and Ann's children? I haven't. There are a few baptisms of children to a Thomas and Ann Fairhurst in the 1830s, but I think these are the children of Thomas and Ann nee Pilkington. It's just that I found a burial of a William Fairhurst at St Aidan's, Billinge, who could be the right age, and he is noted as a "papist". Possibly Thomas and Ann were also baptised as Catholics. Billinge also had a Catholic church and baptisms from 1792 to 1900 are available on microfilm at Wigan library. What a pity that I've just come back from Wigan. I was only there for three days as I was in Liverpool before that, but if I'd had something concrete to look up, I would have popped to the library. Anyway, it's a thought.


Posted by LEP1950 on 5th May 2017  

Hi Jon,
I had also favoured William Fairhurst and Peggy Hill as the parents of Thomas, particularly since they married at St Aidan's in Billinge. But 1803 is certainly way out as far as Thomas's age in the censuses is concerned. Among Thomas and Ann's children was also a Sarah (Margaret's mother). It could be just chance that Ann's parents were also William and Margaret, but then why was the first daughter called Mary?? And where is Randle? This was a name that had been used for generations in Margaret Hill's family. I couldn't find evidence of a baptism of a Randle Fairhurst or an infant death of one. This makes me think that William and John must have been the names of the fathers, but perhaps Thomas just didn't like the name Randle. Naming conventions were unfortunately not written in stone, although at this particular time it was common to name the first two sons after the respective fathers and the first two daughters after the respective mothers.But one can't rely on this. I'm still trying to crosscheck all the Thomas Fairhursts. Will get back to you when I have something more concrete to say.


Posted by JBrown86 on 5th May 2017  

Hi Linda,
I neglected to mention that Ann nee Dixon dies as Ann Fairhurst in early 1867, recorded age 63, in Wigan (Upholland). A comparison of LancsBMD (wigan & leigh entries) and FreeBMD (Wigan) deaths shows that this is the only death between 1861 and 1871 in the area that comes remotely close to corresponding with the age she would have been. Upholland is their district of residence thru multiple censuses so it all makes sense. Wonder why the varying census reports of her birth year are all after what it would have been in this case (1804?).


Posted by JBrown86 on 5th May 2017  

Hi Linda,
interesting you mentioned that -
I had previously considered the most likely parents of Thomas Fairhurst to be William Fairhurst and Margaret Hill - their son Thomas born 1803 - as I've always understood the naming conventions to mean that the father's parents' names were given to the first son and second daughter - in this case Wm & Margaret.

I wasn't sure how likely this is - the birth/baptism time of July 1803 would mean he should have been 81 at death (recorded as 80) - but I have started to construct a little tree using Margaret's parentage (Randle and Sarah) in case anything stands out.

Have I mistaken about the naming conventions? Based on that, I was favouring the second son and first daur as the names of Ann's parents - John and Mary in this case.

Thanks for the pointer re Newton le Willows - It's one name I'm not too familiar despite so much of my father's side of the family coming from Ashton in Makerfield which I understand sometimes to be called Newton in Makerfield and am not sure if that is the same thing as NLW.

Thanks again


Posted by LEP1950 on 4th May 2017  

For Jon,

Ann Dixon could be the daughter of WILLIAM and MARGARET DIXON (note children's names). She was born on January 18th 1809 and christened on the 29th of the same month at St Peter's, Newton-le-Willows, about 7 miles south of Wigan. A scan of the entry is on ancestry under "Wigan, CofE Baptisms, Marriages and Deaths 1580-1812". The period between 1769 and 1835 is missing for this church on lan-opc.org.uk. I've been crosschecking a lot of Thomas Fairhursts, but have reached no definitive decision. Need to do more, but will let you know.


PS Margie, will get back to you. Have been away and not much time at the moment.